AIR is a newcomer to the corporate landscape of New Eden, a sort of "disruptor" start-up in the tech industry. AIR was founded by two entrepreneurs who split from their respective corporations to create their own: Elida Balashirian, formerly of the Sisters of EVE, and Daisuke Ojala, formerly of the Ishukone Corporation. Both left their respective corporations in good standing, and have used the connections they formed there to help kickstart AIR's research and development projects. Their former organizations have been tremendously helpful when it comes to sharing knowledge and resources (from data to ships) so long as AIR is as willing to share the fruits of their own labor.
Focused heavily on research and development of new technologies across multiple industries, AIR is something of a jack of all trades organization. The company has subdivisions that cover everything from combat-oriented technology, industrial and economic endeavors, and exploration-focused pursuits. One of their current projects involves the study, refinement, and iteration of neural data transfer and cloning technologies.
The corporation has launched a new pilot program–the Capsuleer Training Program–that involves testing their newly developed proprietary neural data transfer and cloning tech on aspiring capsuleers as a part of the AIR Capsuleer Training Program.
AIR seeks to recruit the brightest minds from across the cluster, regardless of their Empire of origin. AIR is also not afraid to recruit people who may have fallen afoul of the legal systems of New Eden, claiming the importance of giving such people second chances. Some of their scientists and engineers have previously been either arrested or censured for violating the legal framework restricting their areas of expertise or for doing work considered unethical. Part of AIR's lobbying fund goes toward reforming what the corporation considers outdated and draconian technology suppression laws.
AIR believes in the concept of radical independence. Their research is privately funded through their own efforts (including but not limited to advertising space sales, private benefactors, etc.). While they seek to maintain cordial relationships with the major empires of New Eden for the sake of smooth business transactions, they do not accept government funding for any of their projects. They believe that doing so would compromise the integrity of their work. They consider themselves beholden to no single force or faction in the cluster.
They are extremely dedicated to the pursuit of scientific advancement. They chafe at the cultural and legal limitations placed on technological advancement. For example, the restrictions surrounding the development of true sentience in artificial intelligence is a point of contention for AIR. While the corporation does have its own internal Ethical Review Board, they think that such limitations do a disservice to humanity.
AIR's public relations effort seeks to present the corporation as forward thinking and progressive. Many of their recruitment efforts emphasize their desire to see humanity achieve technological heights none have seen before. They want to lead to the vanguard of a new golden age of scientific advancement that would rival even the Jove Empire at their height.
In the wake of the Triglavian Invasion and the damage it inflicted upon New Eden, AIR doubled down on their ideology. CEO Elida Balashirian put out a statement that read: “Recent events have shown us that the divisions between us only weaken us. We know now that we are stronger together. Unity is our greatest asset. Some might find such unity in military might. At AIR, we choose to look beyond the conflicts of today and toward the vast possibility of tomorrow. Forward, into the future.”
AIR Capsuleer Training Program
The AIR Capsuleer Training Program is managed and overseen by AIR Laboratories. AIR CTP provides aspiring pilots with everything they need to become successful capsuleers, from the acquisition of necessary skills to discovering their long-term career goals. AIR covers the cost of initial training and medical tests in exchange for aspirants permitting AIR to gather and study neurological and physiological data produced by the process of becoming a capsuleer. The goal of the program is to democratize the very expensive and arduous process.
AIR Laboratories is the division of AIR that focuses on developing and testing groundbreaking new technologies. The division is responsible for the oversight and management of the AIR Capsuleer Training Program. AIR keeps their new and improved tech top secret. No one outside the organization has access to it.
Elida Balashirian is one of the Association for Interdisciplinary Research's co-founders and currently serves as the corporation's Chief Executive Officer. She was born in the Gallente Federation and joined the Sisters of EVE after proving herself to be a child prodigy. Elida impressed the inner ranks of SOE before her sudden departure to form her own independent corporation. She has an air of mystery about her and keeps herself relatively removed from the daily workings of the corporation. Every now and then she emerges from her private workshop with an idea for a new technological marvel that AIR can pursue. While it is well known that she was the brains behind the updated capsule and cloning technology used by the corporation, the details of its inner workings remain shrouded in mystery.
Daisuke Ojala is one of the Association for Interdisciplinary Research's co-founders and currently serves as the corporation's Chief Operations Officer. Ojala was born and raised in the Caldari State as a member of the Ishukone Corporation. Ishukone was the first company to receive capsule technology from the Jovians, which made the corp billions in revenue. Growing up, the fact that Ishukone still possesses the most advanced technology outside Jove space was drilled into Ojala's head, igniting within him the desire to surpass the corporation of his birth in terms of future forward technological innovation. He joined forces with Elida Balashirian to start their own corporation that would rival the legacy of Ishukone. Employees of AIR frequently refer to Ojala as the business half of the operation and Balashirian as the brains.
Vesper Calytrix is the Vice President of Operations for the Association for Interdisciplinary Research. Born in the Amarr Empire, Vesper was orphaned in a Blood Raider attack on the ship her family was traveling on. Her escape pod traveled outside of Amarr space and was retrieved by the Sisters of EVE who placed her in an orphanage, allowing her to grow up away from the ideological confines of her traditional Amarrian family. Her upbringing nurtured her intellectual curiosity and natural academic talents. Through her involvement with SOE, she met Elida Balashirian, the CEO of AIR, who recruited Vesper for the position of VP of Operations.
Balin Ferrus rose up through the ranks of the Minmatar Republic Fleet before being recruited by Daisuke Ojala to head AIR’s private security force. In his role as Commander, Ferrus oversees the organization and deployment of AIR paramilitary wing while also supervising combat and weapons training for all AIR pilots. As a commanding officer and an instructor, Ferrus has a reputation for being tough but fair. He prioritizes thorough training and takes his responsibility for the lives of all those under his command very seriously.
Elias Peltonnen is a freelance mining expert currently contracted to work with the Association for Interdisciplinary Research. Born in the Caldari State, Elias Peltonnen broke away from the Hyasyoda Corporation that had been served by several generations of the Peltonnen family. The strict boundaries of corporate life didn't suit him. His heart yearned for adventure. He craved both independence and individual glory, two things that aren't exactly prized among the corporation-driven culture of the Caldari. He struck out on his own, quickly discovering that he had a talent for resource harvesting. The career provided him with the things he craved: travel, adventure, and a ton of money. When AIR approached him about bringing his finely honed skills to the company's mining operations, he accepted the opportunity. AIR pays well and doesn't limit his freedom the same way his original Caldari corporation would have. Now, he strikes metaphorical gold for AIR–and himself.